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Cetlx LogoAs elected co-leads of the IGDA WSIG Tools Initiative Ron Toland and I are happy to announce the forging of a partnership between our special interest group and open-source writing toolmaker Celtx. Celtx was first point out by Tools Initiative facilitator Corvus Elrod and he was right, Celtx is exactly the partner we need to create this potentially wall shattering tool. As AAA titles grow in magnitude having standardization in the tools used for our industry is of dire importance. Game writing increasingly affects all parts of game design, from help text to NPC dialog and beyond. Game writing tools and systems tend to remain proprietary, and subsequently leads designer and writer alike to reinvent the wheel for every title. Seeing this as a barrier to entry for talent, developers, and publishers alike, the International Game Developers Associations Writers Special Interest Group has created the Tools Initiative to forge the creation of an Universal Open-Source Game Writing Tool. Based on the free open-source writing tool Celtx, the tool will be free and modular.

My first title with THQ and Relic Entertainment launched this past week and is currently the top selling PC game in North America according to Gamasutra. We created a wealth of content for a product that took less than a year to produce, while the current Metacritic score of 85 might seem pale in comparison to the first COH titles’ 93 I think the best reviews have yet to come. I find it interesting how some game “critics”, and yes I use that term loosely, seem to play 1/4 of the game before reviewing. It would be like hearing a review based on the first 100 pages of novel. Though I do realize finishing the single player game seems a daunting task. On another note, I’m glad my British slang seems to be going over well with those in the UK, it was hard to design speech for a colloquial English I knew little of.

    “The British – tea-drinking, moustache-twirling nancy-boys. Usually dastardly, or at the very least conniving. This much, Hollywood and games have taught us. Clearly, uber-RTS developers Relic have spent some time hanging out at branches of Wetherspoons, as they’ve managed to paint a rather more accurate portrait of the denizens of our sceptered isle, whose forces make up one of the two new factions in this World War II RTS ‘expandalone’. Apparently, we’re incredibly foul-mouthed, angry and violent. Sounds about right, really.” –Alec Meer EuroGamer

I had to create believable voices in my head, amalgamated from research
on WWII British soldier slang, and transcribe them into a system of

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Author Stephen E. Dinehart is a producer, designer, writer, and artist. You can find out more about him on his self-titled website.

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